Hope Network Dedicates New Rehab Center

July 11, 2007
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Local philanthropist Peter Cook helped Hope Network Rehabilitation Services officially dedicate its new 6,000-square-foot rehabilitation gym and therapy pool at a special reception on May 10. The event took place at the new Peter & Pat Cook Center for Rehabilitation, located within Hope Network Rehabilitation Services at 1490 East Beltline Ave. SE.

Cook’s significant donation to the $1.1 million project helped create the expansion to Hope’s five-building, 14-acre East Beltline Rehabilitation campus. The Peter & Pat Cook Center provides more space and facilities to a growing number of people seeking rehabilitation services in West Michigan.

The expansion includes a larger physical therapy gymnasium and pool, as well as additional treatment facilities and some reconverted offices.

Hope Network CEO Phil Weaver, along with Hope Network Foundation Board President Wilbur Lettinga, took part in the ribbon-cutting ceremony, which included remarks from Peter Cook and a blessing of the building by Newell Cerak, father of Whitney Cerak, the Taylor University student who this past year recovered at Hope’s inpatient rehabilitation program.

“For years, we have been dreaming about adding on to this building and expanding our capabilities,” said Hope Network CEO Phil Weaver.

“The wait has been worth it. Peter and Pat Cook’s donation to this facility will greatly enhance the quality of the rehabilitation programs Hope Network provides to individuals.”

“This new construction will allow us to do so much more,” said Margaret Kroese, executive director/vice president, Hope Network Rehabilitation Services. “We will have room for more treatment options and modalities. We will be able to expand our treatment populations and add new service lines such as aquatics programs and fitness groups.”

The largest part of the new construction is the main treatment room, a 2,596-square-foot “gym” that will hold an array of rehabilitation equipment including wheelchair-accessible cardio and fitness machines.

Also part of this addition is a new 12-by-20-foot therapeutic pool. The pool will not only allow Hope Network to save the hundreds of dollars it spends each month to rent a community pool, it also will lead to the development of an aquatics program. “It’s difficult to keep physically fit as we get older, and the water allows our consumers to do so much more,” said Cheri Feldt, clinical manager of the Cook Center.

Another addition will be three private treatment rooms. People who are easily agitated can receive private treatment with no distractions. Pediatric care can be provided in spaces that are separate from the adults, and private rooms for physicians to examine their patients will now be available.

Feldt explained, “Within our new treatment facility, we are trying to create a ‘health-club’ environment. We want people to be excited about receiving treatment and working on functional goals. Rehab is very hard, physically painful and emotionally draining. For some, it’s a daily effort for years.

“Hopefully, having a beautiful, spacious facility to work in with skilled staff who want to spend this time with you will make this part of that journey to recovery a little more pleasant.”

In addition to the segment of the treatment population that is receiving more acute care, there are many who are at a stage where health and wellness and maintaining goals they previously obtained are the big issues. Daily exercise or participation in wellness routines helps preserve function and independence.

“Whenever possible, we work with our consumers to integrate them into community-based health and wellness opportunities.

“However, some don’t feel comfortable or safe in those environments, or they need a level of assistance that is not available at an athletic club. In our new gym, during non-treatment hours, we will provide that opportunity for any of our consumers to work out regularly and receive as little or as much assistance as they need,” said Feldt.

The physical therapy, occupational therapy and recreational therapy departments will move into the new space, making it easier to provide co-treatments and coordinate care.

Feldt explained that the demand for rehabilitation services across the spectrum has grown significantly: “When I started here 10 years ago, we had 11 full-time clinical staff. We now have 58, and that does not include the vocational, residential or support staff.

“We have such a broad continuum of care that when people enter our system and discover what great services we offer, they stay with us.

“We are always reinventing ourselves.” HQ

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